A merchant account is way for businesses to accept credit cards both online and offline. Merchant account processor companies provide credit card authorization and charges in real-time.
Merchant account service companies are plentiful on the Internet. In Industry terms, these companies are called Merchant account providers. Many merchant account providers forgo charging you an application fee and can approve your business within 24 hours. Even businesses with a difficult credit record are eligible for a merchant account solution.
Generally, there are two varieties of Merchant accounts. One is card present and other is card not present. Ecommerce stores are required to use card not present transactions. By their nature, card not present transactions are more risky and therefore are charged a higher discount rate. For companies which already have a credit card processing terminal, talk with your bank before entering card not present transactions.